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As owner of Winnetka's Neapolitan Collection boutique, Kelly Golden has hosted trunk shows and events for the likes of Derek Lam, Wes Gordon, and Gilles Mendel. In this season of entertaining, we asked Golden to share her most festive tips for making guests feel at home. Because if it's good enough for Lam, it's good enough for your mother-in-law (well, here's hoping.)
· On welcoming big-name designers to Chicago: ""For Derek Lam we chose [to host the event at] Studio Paris, where we could do a presentation of looks in one room and then enjoy an indulgent meal in another room. Derek loves meals served family-style because its makes the dinner more intimate and conversational, and less formal. For Wes Gordon and Irene Neuwirth, we did a private dinner party with close friends who adore their designs at a beautiful Lincoln Park townhouse. We had a tent with a three tier cake to celebrate Neapolitan Collection's 10 Year Anniversary! We wanted to make it as personal as possible, so everything from the color scheme to Irene's signature drink of tequila with fresh lime juice was [customized.]"
· To entertain out-of-town guests: "My favorite go-to spot is RL in the winter. I grab a seat by the fireplace for a great burger and fries. For shopping, Maze Home in Winnetka has the most unique home accessories; and the Architectural Boat Tour is always a favorite for guests from out of town."
· "For entertaining at home, Lakeside Foods in Winnetka sells the best filets in the world. I get fresh flowers from Molly Flavin, and make sure I have my Astier de Villatte dishes from Maze Home ready to go."
· "My signature drink is an incredible Barolo or Brunello wine, which I enjoy most at home."
· "For the best recipes, anything with cheese in it is always a crowd pleaser"
· "My [party] playlist includes a mix from Arcade Fire, the Rolling Stones, Poi Dog Pondering and Prince"
· "My hostess outfit this holiday season will be a fun party dress from Jonathan Saunders. This season I'm loving dresses with color or interesting texture, like feathers or velvet."
· "To welcome guests, I make sure to have a great smelling candle from Cire Trudon and luxurious sheets from D. Porthault [in the guest room]."
· Neapolitan [Official Site]
· All Neapolitan coverage [Racked Chicago]